Procedural FAQ for Main Campus: Faculty
(See FPS #11 and FPS#11G. Procedures for the Law and Medical Schools differ substantially from those on main campus described below.)
- What should I do if I suspect a student has cheated?
- Inform the student as soon as possible of your suspicion and, if possible, discuss the matter with him or her to explain the nature of the alleged offense and to inquire into the student's knowledge of its character and seriousness.
- What do I do if I conclude that the student has cheated?
- Impose an appropriate penalty and submit an Honor Code Violation Report on the Portal (received by the Office of the Provost and Dean of Students), and—for graduate students only—to the appropriate academic dean. Provide a copy of the report to the student.
- How do I determine the penalty for a student who has cheated?
- For an undergraduate student, the penalty you impose in your course is up to you. If you have a written policy specifying penalties, follow it. If not, we encourage you to consult with colleagues and your chair to learn how similar incidents have been handled in your department, and with the Provost’s Office to learn how such cases have been handled across the University.
Hofstra policy states that a graduate student who commits a “gross and unambiguous” violation of academic honesty—such as cheating on an exam—shall fail the course. Graduate students guilty of “violations that require a more sophisticated understanding of the use of sources and development of an authorial voice” may receive lesser penalties.
- Why does Hofstra ask me to discuss the violation with the student?
- Unless the student appeals your judgment, you will have sole discretion to determine his or her penalty. It seems fair that you should hear the student out before you impose punishment. And even in the most clear-cut cases, speaking to our students about their violations is consistent with our intent to educate offenders.
- Why does Hofstra ask me to report the violation to the Provost?
- First, reporting the violation guarantees the student due process. Second, it allows the Provost to identify repeat offenders who are subject to stricter penalties. Third, it allows the Honor Board to collect data on the nature of cheating at Hofstra.
- Will the student be expelled if I report him or her?
- If the student is an undergraduate first-time offender, he or she will likely not be suspended or expelled. Repeat offenders are subject to suspension or expulsion at the discretion of the Provost, as are graduate students.
- What happens if a student appeals my decision?
- The Provost will review the appeal and attempt to mediate a resolution. If no resolution is achieved, an Ad Hoc Board of Appeals will hear the case and issue a binding ruling. You will need to attend the hearing to present your case. The presumption of innocence applies, so the burden is on you to demonstrate that a violation occurred and to justify the penalty. Most findings of academic dishonesty are not appealed by students.